Looking for macro input

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Joldham, Apr 27, 2007.

  1. Joldham

    Joldham TPF Noob!

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    Ok, I've done my due dilligence in researching different macro setups (other than just buying a macro lens), and I think I'm more confused now than I was to begin with!

    First off, I want to play with macro photography. I'm not sure yet that I'm serious enough to justify getting a dedicated macro lens. I've been looking at several "cheap" options, and just can't decide which would be best.

    My gear as it stands now: Nikon D50, 18-70 mm f/3.5-4.5G, 50mm 1.8D, 75-300mm f/4.5-5.6. Filter sizes are 67, 52 and 62, respectively.

    So, the options I am considering, as well as the pros/cons as I've been able to deduce, are as follows...

    1. reversing ring for the 50mm onto the camera body. Pros: cheap, good light, good results (?) Cons: no communication with the camera for metering, etc, no adjustability in magnification.

    2. reversing ring to attach the 50mm to the 18-70. Very interested in hearing opinion on this one, as I've been able to find any information about this specific setup. Pros: cheap, camera can still "talk" to lens for metering etc (?) Cons: unknown quality of results, probably lots of light loss, ?

    3. kenko extention tubes. Pros: communicate with camera, keep metering etc.. Cons: possible quality issues, way more money than I wanted to spend.

    4. lens attachment like the raynox or nikon 4t. Really, I don't know anything about them, so any input is good.

    5. Any other options?

    Really what I'm lookin for is relatively user-friendly system with some adjustability in magnification and good quality results, and not too expensive.

    I really appreciate any help the more experienced macro folks can give me here.
     
  2. Aquarium Dreams

    Aquarium Dreams TPF Noob!

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    Three things I use for macro photography:

    1. Extension tubes. These are the best of the three. They turn any lens into a macro lens, and as for quality, they contain no optics, so you retain the quality of whatever lens you attach to them.

    2. The macro switch on the Sigma 70-300mm lens. It's only 1:2 magnification, not as much as the extension tubes, but it's nice to have.

    3. A loupe in front the camera's lens. Very low-fi and fun to play with. :mrgreen:

    I'm still pretty new to macro photography, so this is by no means a professional opinion. Just my 2c. ;)
     
  3. DSLR noob

    DSLR noob TPF Noob!

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    http://www.thephotoforum.com/forum/showthread.php?t=79506

    That was by holding the lens in front of the camera with my hands. I found out, the shorter the focal length, the more magnification. There is a TON of light loss on lenses without a really wide aperture. You'll also notice a ridiculously shallow DOF.
     
  4. Joldham

    Joldham TPF Noob!

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    Well, I've done another couple of dozen hours of research online, and I'm leaning towards the raynox DCR-250 attachment. I'd really love some more input on this whole subject from the more experienced folks, though.
     
  5. RacePhoto

    RacePhoto TPF Noob!

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    The final decision is yours based on your research, but I prefer extension tubes. Less expensive than a special lens, and as above, work with any lens.
     
  6. drgibson

    drgibson TPF Noob!

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    What do you intend to attach this to? It looks to me like it will only work on certain mm openings.

    I use a Nikkor 105mm f208 macro lens and I have the Kenko extension tube set. Whenever possible I also use a tripod and a remote release just to minimize movement. If you can control the lighting and you are working with a stationary object then DOF becomes a moot point since you can control the DOF with aperture and Shutter speed. I bought my 105 used and I have been very happy with it
     
  7. Joldham

    Joldham TPF Noob!

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    The one I was looking at said with the spring-fit clamps, it would fit any lens with a 52 to 67mm filter size, perfect for the range of lenses have.


    I have looked at the kenko extension tube set, and if it were about half the price I would be all over it. But for $140 for the full set, I have a tough time justifying it. Plus I like the apparent ease with which you can throw on the raynox attachment, don't even have to screw it on or remove a lens.

    But the point where I start to drool in confusion is in trying to figure out how these different products will actually behave in use. Things like, how much light will I lose, comparatively? What will be my focusing distance? What will be my final result, size-wize? 1:1, 2:1, 10:1? How sharp will they be?

    I just figured out that my 75-300 lens will focus even closer (5 ft instead of 9 ft) if I switch it to manual focus, but that still isn't any kind of real macro, and it is still an awful long working distance.

    Thanks again for all the input!
     

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